A rare find on Bournda Beach

Naomi Shoobridge was really luck to fing a large and whole Paper Nautilus shell on Bournda Beach the other day. While we do occasionally see pieces of shell from these cephalopods, it’s very rare to find a whole shell as they are really fragile and soon get broken by the sea or seagulls foraging for the dead or dying squid inside.

Paper Nautilus Bournda Beach Photo Naomi Shoobridge

Goanna Hatchlings

Pete Constable filmed these very young hatchling Goannas emerging from their Termite mound nest near the Tarha Bermagui Road this week. When they are older they are very craggy, but how pretty as babies with their fresh skin!

Thanks for sharing the footage Pete, it’s a rare and lucky sighting.https://youtu.be/BEa2377bHM0

Lace Monitor (Goanna) varanus varius
Photo Max campbell

Spot-tail Quoll or Wedge-tail eagle – who won?

We recently came across a magnificent image taken in the Guy Fawkes National Park up in northern NSW. Although this is outside our area, we do have both Spot-tailed quolls and Wedge tailed eagles living around here, so we thought you would like to see this as it is a remarkable image.

Quoll and Wedge-tail photo Dr Guy Ballard

This was taken with a motion sensitive camera and you can see the lure station in the photo. We are all speculating as to what happened before and after this image was taken – who would win this stand off?

We will let you know if we receive further information………..

Flying foxes at Glebe Lagoon

Bega Valley Shire Council is currently developing a Camp Management Plan for the seasonal colony of grey-headed flying foxes at Glebe Lagoon.

The Atlas of Life has been invited to ask its members if they would like to contribute to the community consultation. Please see below for the link to their survey.

Flying foxes at Glebe Lagoon Photo Michael McMaster

“We are sending you this because you are involved with a group that may have an interest in the colony. We need your help in making sure the Camp Management Plan considers the interests of all stakeholders.

It would be great if you could complete the online survey (https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/flying-foxes). This will give us a much better understanding of what the whole community thinks about the flying-fox camp at Glebe Lagoon.

The Glebe Lagoon flying-fox camp To the best of our knowledge grey-headed flying-foxes have been using Glebe Lagoon to roost during the day for more than 50 years. The camp hosts around 20,000 flying-foxes from Spring to Autumn each year. The numbers fluctuate depending on the availability of food resources in the surrounding region. During their time at Glebe Lagoon the mothers also give birth and raise their young. The animals use the camp to rest during the day before heading off at dusk to forage on the nectar provided by our surrounding native forests then returning to the camp at dawn. The Glebe Lagoon flying-fox camp management plan The Glebe Lagoon flying-fox Camp Management Plan will identify the most appropriate responses to managing current and potential impacts from flying foxes that roost in Glebe Lagoon alongside ensuring the welfare of the flying-foxes. During the development of the plan we will be exploring issues such as health, safety and community well-being, potential risks to flying foxes, natural values of Glebe Lagoon, cost of management options, timeframes and legislative requirements”.

Frog study volunteers wanted – Broughton Island Field trip opportunity

Here is a great opportunity for volunteers to join field trips to Broughton Island (North of Newcastle) to help a research project studying the impacts of climate change on frogs and their habitats. The study was started in 1998 and looks at frogs, tadpoles and the changes in their habitats.

 There are five trips between September 2017 and April 2018. Anyone interested should read the attached information and contact Professor Graham Pyke Graham.Pyke@uts.edu.au  0408-474-021


Detailed information about the trip:

Broughton Island – Call for volunteers #03- Jul 2017

Thanks to Danie for the information. I suggest anyone who is interested also let us know and see if Atlas friends can travel together.

Dem bones have a story to tell

Recently at a Bermagui U3A beach fossick, one intrepid searcher brought back a decomposing skeleton of a fur seal as his particluar find of the day. In spite of the serious pong for those downwind of this find, Alan Scrymgeour, our leader and guide, was most excited by the treasure and took it home(luckily he and Lyn have a UTE , so it did travel outside!

A month later Alan shows us the skeleton transformed, through loving care and a range of serious chemicals. He now has a pristine skeleton and it’s possible to see his reading of the animal’s death.


Along the ribs, you can clearly see a decisive break, which alan tells us is evidence of a large shark attack – probably a Bull shark or similar.

An interesting and informative find and a nice conclusion to an enlightening search. Thanks again Alan.

Let’s map invasive European Wasps

If you see any of these invasive wasps please record them on NatureMapr so we can see where they are a problem.

Native thynnid wasp
(flower wasp)

European wasp, photo Ali Rodway

Have you noticed the busy activity of wasps in the garden in late summer and autumn? Many of these are harmless and beneficial native wasps, like flower wasps. These perform an important role as pollinators and as biological pest control on the farm or in the garden. Some help control caterpillars which they feed to their larvae. Others lay their eggs in or on a range of host insects. The larvae hatch and eventually kill the host. There are wasps which parasitise leaf-eating scarab insects, pasture grubs and Christmas beetles and whitefly pests of tomatoes and cucumbers. So it’s worth loving your wasps.

Landholders and the Koori Work Crew here in the Bega Valley have recently reported seeing (and feeling the stings of) a less loveable wasp – the European wasp (Vespula germanica). This wasp is neither harmless nor beneficial. It poses a threat to local ecosystems, personal safety, recreational values and rural industries on the far south coast.

For more information read CMN April 2017 newsletter

A rare Wraparound spider

Known as a’wrap around’ spider this cryptic little spider has the curious habit of wrapping around a small branch thus providing it with amazing camouflage. Indigenous to Australia, the spider belongs to the genus Dolophones and seventeen species are known (Wikipedia). We cannot identify the particular species of this spider but it was found on the verandah of Lyn and Alan Scrymgeour’s home at Myrtle Mountain near Wyndham NSW.

Wraparound spider Photo Lyn Scrymgeour

Wraparound spider Photo Lyn Scrymgeour